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Forum Home > Notes for putting your Solex through the M.O.T. test before having it registered > Putting your Solex though the first M.O.T. test

Paul G
Site Owner
Posts: 2433

For the sake of this article, please be aware that all the following statements are offered in good faith and any conclusions I have drawn are from information found on the Internet. I am not an expert in these subjects and the information is written as a guide to help Solex owners with getting their machines through the first M.O.T. test. I have included links to the relevant information but you should still check these out for your own satisfaction. Just because I have said it here does not make it true or legal!

As all of us with an unregistered Velosolex will need an M.O.T. test as part of the registration process, there are some things you will definitely need - and some things you won’t! For the sake of the test, a Solex is generally defined as a ‘moped’. In loose terms, this means it is a motorcycle with an engine capacity no greater than 50 cc and with a design speed of less than 50 k.p.h. (31 m.p.h.) and it can be moved by pedals – if it was first used before 1st September 1977. (Just to complicate things, before 1-9-77 there was no maximum speed restriction so long as they were less than 50 cc – but that won’t be a Solex problem!)

The following information has been taken from the VOSA M.O.T. manual. See https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/510388/mot-inspection-manual-classes-1-2.pdf  Solexes and mopeds come under the 'Class 1' regulations.


FRONT LIGHT: A motor bicycle is only required to have a dipped-beam headlamp (but may also have a main beam) if it:

a) was used on or after 1st May 1995 and cannot exceed 50 k.p.h. (31 m.p.h.) with an engine capacity not exceeding 50 cc. or

b) was first used before 1st January 1972 and with an engine capacity of less than 50 cc. or

c) is any machine having a maximum speed not exceeding 50 k.p.h. (31 m.p.h.)


REAR STOP LIGHT: Need not be fitted to a machine which:

a) cannot exceed 25 m.p.h., (this should also apply to one of the later Solexes built after 1st April 1986) or

b) was first used before 1st January I936 or

c) was first used before 1st April 1986 and which has an engine capacity of less than 50 cc.


REAR REFLECTOR: Applies to all machines. Mopeds and motor bicycles require one unobscured red reflector which is aligned to the vehicles longitudinal centre line and is positioned to reflect squarely to the rear. (Extra reflectors fitted to a motorcycle are not included in the inspection.)


DIRECTION INDICATORS: If fitted they must work. However, they need not be fitted to a machine which

a) cannot exceed 50 k.p.h. (31 m.p.h.), or

b). was first used before 1st August 1986, or

c) are 'off road' machines and are designed to carry only the rider.


HORN / AUDIBLE WARNING DEVICE: An audible warning device is usually an electrical horn. A horn is defined as an instrument, not being a bell, gong or siren, capable of giving audible and sufficient warning of the approach or position of a vehicle. A motor bicycle first used before 1st August 1973 may be fitted with a bulb horn. (Therefore by definition, any Solex registered after 1st August 1973 must have an electric horn fitted.)


TYRES: Where the engine capacity is not greater than 50 cc, tread depth may be less than 1 mm, if the tread pattern is clearly visible around the entire circumference and across the whole breadth of the tread. (An unusual rule and not one I am rushing to exploit!)


REAR NUMBER PLATE LAMP: Mopeds do not require a rear number plate lamp.


REAR NUMBER PLATE: (Note:a front number plate is not required) The M.O.T. tester will check that there is a registration plate fitted at the rear of the motor bicycle or side car and check it for security and condition.

On machines first registered on or after 1st January 1973, check that the registration plate

a. has black characters on a yellow background

b. is mounted vertically, or as close to vertical as is reasonably practical

(That means an old black number plate with silver characters is perfectly legal on any Solex on or before 31st December 1972. - since changed, see update below)


2016 REAR NUMBER PLATE UPDATE.

Since this original article was written in 2013, the law has changed slightly whereby the original 'over 40 years rule' for black and silver number plates is now a rolling date. i.e. if your machine was manufactured (note - not registered) before 1st January 1976 you can now legally display a black and silver digit number plate. (Which is particularly odd when you read that the original law stated that after 1st January 1973 it had to be black and yellow!). Therefore, in 2017, if your Solex was manufactured before 1st January 1977 (and so on) you will at the moment be able to legally display a black and silver number plate. (Personally, I am sure on the grounds of safety alone, this anomaly will be changed at sometime in the future and we will be back to yellow and black reflective plates once again but for the time being (November 2016) it is the law. You can read more information on the official Government website here: https://insidedvla.blog.gov.uk/2015/11/17/whats-the-story-with-black-and-silver-number-plates/ )


OK, so that is what the law requires. If you have a friendly M.O.T. tester and some of these things are not checked properly and you get your M.O.T. certificate issued – fine. However, remember this does not mean your Solex complies with the law and if you get pulled over by the Police . . . . . . . . . .

 

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Paul G

"Getting there ....... slowly"   

October 17, 2013 at 7:59 AM Flag Quote & Reply

toulky
Limited Member
Posts: 24

Good info Paul ta. My solex going in for MOT shortly :mad:


 

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8)

June 25, 2014 at 4:25 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Paul G
Site Owner
Posts: 2433

toulky at June 25, 2014 at 4:25 PM

Good info Paul ta. My solex going in for MOT shortly :mad:


 

Glad it has been of use. Good luck with getting your M.O.T.  :)

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Paul G

"Getting there ....... slowly"   

June 25, 2014 at 5:19 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Napoleon
Member
Posts: 96

Most probably your mot tester chap will scratch his head and wonder what the heck to test. When I turned up he looked first at his array of modern mot gizmos, then at me wearing a 1950 bone dome clutching Napoleon with a silly grin on my face. He checked the brakes (gently) on the rolling road and to all our surprise proclaimed them to be better than a lot of motor bikes he had tested  He did not know what to do next really, so to try and justify the 29 squid fee he decided to check the headlight beam height (guess he thought that would be simple) .:P....wrong. I peddled around in a circle (just avoiding the inspection pit) and soon as the mighty engine roared into life, I yanked up the engine into the disengaged position, of course the engine is needed to power the light the bulb. He twiddled the handles then offered up his light measureing box thingy, scratched his head some more, fiddled with the tuning knobs and proclaimed the light beam was pointing at the moon:/ Don't worry I said, I can soon fix that, and promptly lifted the back wheel up in the air :D Well after everyone had stopped giggling ( quite a crowd by now) I pointed out that the engine was tipped up to disconnect the "back peddling frimble nut synchromesh velvet drive transmission" AKA the granite wheel, so I would not drive all over him and his light box thingy. At this point I think he lost the will to live cos he wandered off muttering and eventually came back with my brand new mot .......easy peasy. 

Moral of this story find an mot chappie with a sense of humour ;) 

good luck Trevor

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Growing old is compulsory, growing up is not :)

June 25, 2014 at 8:25 PM Flag Quote & Reply

GrahamP
Member
Posts: 99

Paul - I have just submitted my NOVA1 form and now, if I understand the procedure correctly, I need an MOT for DVLA registration. As I will not have a registration number at this time and, by default, no rear number plate, would you be able to verify that the MOT will not require number plate checks?

Graham

 

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"Running tyred"

Money can't buy you happiness but it can buy a Velosolex - which is very close

June 26, 2014 at 7:21 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Paul G
Site Owner
Posts: 2433

The M.O.T. tester will need to see the engine number and the frame number on the Solex, together with the dating certificate from either the N.A.C.C. or the E.A.C.C. which will confirm same and the year of manufacture. You will also need to insure the Solex. (Not necessarily for the M.O.T. if you are taking it there on a trailer but definitely if you intend to ride it to the test station.) This can be done using the frame / engine number. When the registraion is allocated by the D.V.L.A., phone your insurance company to notify them of the new registration and they will re-issue your insurance certificate (usually at no extra charge!).

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Paul G

"Getting there ....... slowly"   

June 26, 2014 at 8:10 AM Flag Quote & Reply

GrahamP
Member
Posts: 99

Thanks Paul

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"Running tyred"

Money can't buy you happiness but it can buy a Velosolex - which is very close

June 26, 2014 at 8:12 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Paul G
Site Owner
Posts: 2433

GrahamP at June 26, 2014 at 8:12 AM

Thanks Paul

Just edited / added a bit more about the insurance.

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Paul G

"Getting there ....... slowly"   

June 26, 2014 at 8:15 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Elliot
Member
Posts: 218

Well I took my 1968 S3800 for its' first MOT today and I'm not sure why, but I was slightly nervous. I shouldn't have been.

The examiner was very interested in the bike, as was his 3 mechanics and retired father (ex garage owner) who came out to play, I mean observe.

He wanted to see the certificate/evidence of age, I'd got from the EACC. He was surprised that no month was stated on the certificate - only the year, so when he 'logged in' to the MOT programme, he said he need to enter something, so he entered June, sounded good to me.

He checked the lights, bulb horn, front and rear wheel bearings for excessive play, spokes, pedal crank, steering head bearing, chain and brakes, saying he'd never actually MOT'd a push bike before !!!! .

He asked about the lack of a brake light and dip for the headlight - I'd spend some time looking through the VOSA class 1 regulations before hand - and it seems that as long as the 25 mph top speed limit applies to our bikes and the 49cc isn't exceeded then none of his concerns were valid. He passed the bike, nothing was found to be wrong and there was no advisorys. He said the brakes were actually surprisingly good, for such a light bike and about twice as good as they needed to be !!

I've already done the NOVA declaration and received an acknowledgement, so I'll get the insurance organised and then send everything away to Big Brother DVLA.

Hopefully not too long now...

 Elliot

July 9, 2014 at 5:29 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Paul G
Site Owner
Posts: 2433

Well done, Elliot. You'll soon be speeding around at 18 m.p.h! The power will be underwhelming.

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Paul G

"Getting there ....... slowly"   

July 9, 2014 at 5:48 PM Flag Quote & Reply

toulky
Limited Member
Posts: 24

:lol:

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8)

July 21, 2014 at 4:30 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Ruedeleglise / Bowser Bill
Member
Posts: 490

Oh dear! I am thinking about bringing my French registered and insured 2200 back to the UK. All I have read above is quite mind boggling. I had to register this VS in France last year, as it had never been registered, but apart from some fairly typical French beurocracy and a bit of shouting it was completed in a few days. It seems the UK system is far more complicated! I need some encouragement!

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My cup isn't half empty, it isn't half full. It just isn't large enough!

September 6, 2014 at 2:34 PM Flag Quote & Reply

ROBIN
Member
Posts: 2

Hi Guys, many thanks for your words of wisdom, I have 5 bikes brought back from France and was wondering what to do with the registration as none have been registered in France, now I have a good idea on where I need to look for the dates and what to do with the bikes. I guess I will do one at a time and see how they go. I will keep you posted..... I don't have a cup yet though !!!:lol:

November 9, 2015 at 1:09 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Ruedeleglise / Bowser Bill
Member
Posts: 490

Good morning everyone. I know that I have asked this before but don't recollect and can't find an answer.....is a French registration certificate or Carte Grise with year of manufacture acceptable by the Uk as a valid dating certificate or will I need an EACC or similar as well?

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My cup isn't half empty, it isn't half full. It just isn't large enough!

January 16, 2016 at 2:48 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Andrew Winsley
Member
Posts: 4

Have just read this very informative forum on first time registration, what on earth is the EACC? I have determined the age from this website by checking the engine number 7019120 which indicates January 1971' it was sold as a 1971 model but received no paperwork at all!

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June 15, 2016 at 9:57 AM Flag Quote & Reply

BrianSolex
Moderator
Posts: 4346

Andrew Winsley at June 15, 2016 at 9:57 AM

Have just read this very informative forum on first time registration, what on earth is the EACC? I have determined the age from this website by checking the engine number 7019120 which indicates January 1971' it was sold as a 1971 model but received no paperwork at all!

The EACC is the East Anglian Cyclemotor Club:

http://www.autocycle.org.uk/eacc.html


They can provide a dating certificate:

http://www.autocycle.org.uk/v765.html


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The bicycle with the motor...SOLEX.

June 15, 2016 at 10:38 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Andrew Balfour
Member
Posts: 109

A little update (also bourne out by another poster), trying to MOT my 1963 S2200, the tester insisted that it should have bump stops fitted. Very tedious, and needless to say there was no discussion. So my next question - anyone fitted bump stops to an S2200 without engine guards?

April 30, 2018 at 10:13 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Paul G
Site Owner
Posts: 2433

I.M.H.O. your M.O.T. tester is wrong.

In the official V.O.S.A. testers manual: http://www.velosolexclubuk.com/apps/forums/topics/show/13398171-v-o-s-a-mot-inspection-manual- Section 2, steering and Suspension, item 3 says: Examine steering lock stops (if fitted). A failure would be for a loose, missing, maladjusted or ineffective steering lockstop.

Therefore, as they are not fitted, they can't be tested and it can't be failed. As the early Solexes were not originally designed with or had lock stops fitted (except for the 5000 model and maybe some very late S3800 / 4600's?) fitting any sort of lockstop would be unapproved, untested and could even become dangerous.

I would point out the V.O.S.A. manual section to the examiner and state that, as the Solex never had them fitted, therefore they can't be tested (or failed) and there is nowhere in the manual that says they are required in any sort of way.

If the examiner won't back down, personally I would go and spend my M.O.T. money with another tester who understands what is and isn't required. Just my opinion.


B.T.W. Just as another point: How would you test an autocycle with a clip-on motor e.g. Trojan Minimotor, Powerpak, BSA wingwheel, etc.? These were fitted to bicycles and they never had lockstops fitted either.

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Paul G

"Getting there ....... slowly"   

April 30, 2018 at 3:46 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Andrew Balfour
Member
Posts: 109

Thanks for that Paul.  The actual note on the MOT failure reads "steering lock stop ineffective [2.1.3]".  I might try once more with the tester, if not I does anyone know of a sympathetic tester in the Oxfordshire area?

May 2, 2018 at 12:21 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Paul G
Site Owner
Posts: 2433

Andrew Balfour at May 2, 2018 at 12:21 AM

Thanks for that Paul.  The actual note on the MOT failure reads "steering lock stop ineffective [2.1.3]".  I might try once more with the tester, if not I does anyone know of a sympathetic tester in the Oxfordshire area?

Andrew.

How can the steering lock be ineffective? If is not there (and it has never had one designed or fitted) it cannot be tested or failed. I would take the case up with V.O.S.A. Maybe the tester needs to go on a refresher course?


P.S. Just checked on the failure note 2.1.3. and exactly as it says in the manual: 'Check steering locks (if fitted)' How can they be ineffective if they are not fitted and the steering meets all the previous criteria regarding control, tightness of cables, legshields not impeding the steering, grips too close to a fixed part as to impede the steering, etc, etc.?

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Paul G

"Getting there ....... slowly"   

May 2, 2018 at 3:37 AM Flag Quote & Reply

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